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A Rare Feat

Vani Kola has made a mark in the male-dominated world of venture capital with several successful exits.

A Rare Feat

Vani Kola is among the few Indian women who have been able to reach the top in the male-dominated venture capital, or VC, industry. In the US, for instance, only 6 per cent women are VCs. The numbers in India are minuscule.

Different VCs have different strategies for selecting start-ups to invest, but for Kola, the answer lies in the founders. "We very much believe in the founders' first philosophy. We spend a lot of time getting to know them and if we like a company we stay invested with them for a very long time. That has helped us succeed," says Kola.

Anant Goel, CEO of Milkbasket, where Kalaari led a Series A funding round of $7 million, agrees. He says her clarity of thought and ability to take a stand for what is right is what makes her stand out as an investor. Some of her successful exits have been Myntra when it was acquired by Flipkart for $330 million, Urban Ladder, BlueStone and Zivame, among others. 

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